Institute of Public Affairs
The Institute of Public Affairs (IPA) is a public policy think tank based in Melbourne, Australia. It advocates free market economic policies such as privatisation and deregulation of state-owned enterprises, trade liberalisation and deregulated workplaces, climate change skepticism, the abolition of the minimum wage, the repeal of the parts of the Racial Discrimination Act 1975, In its own words, the Institute believes in "the free market of ideas, the free flow of capital, a limited and efficient government, the rule of law, and representative democracy."
The IPA was founded in the early 1940s, partly in response to the collapse of Australia's main conservative party, the United Australia Party.[original research?] The IPA was one of a number of groups which came together to form the Liberal Party of Australia, and became an important fund raising body for the Liberal Party in Victoria. The IPA returned to prominence as a thinktank in the 1990s, following a merger with the Australian Institute of Public Policy, headed by John Hyde who became Executive Director.
The IPA funded by its membership which include both private individuals and businesses. Among these businesses are ExxonMobil, Telstra, WMC Resources, BHP Billiton, Phillip Morris, Murray Irrigation Limited, and Visy Industries.
The Institute has close ideological and political affinities with the Liberal Party in Australia. For example, John Roskam, the IPA's Executive Director, worked on the Liberal Party's 2001 election campaign. He has also run for Liberal Party preselection. Prime Minister John Howard (Liberal Party) delivered the 60th C D Kemp lecture to the Institute in 2004, titled Iraq: The Importance of Seeing it Through.
- lower taxation;
- deregulation of the Australian economy particularly as affecting industrial relations and trade unionism;
- privatisation of government businesses and reduced government spending;
- greater transparency in government;
- opposition to perceived left wing ideological bias in Australia's public broadcaster the Australian Broadcasting Corporation;
- a free market approach to environmental problems, and criticism of aspects of climate change science;
- the elimination of existing programs of welfare targeted at Indigenous Australians, with the aim of encouraging transition to work, self-reliance and high incomes.
The IPA has affiliations with think tanks in the U.S., Canada, UK and Asia. It has a close relationship with the American Enterprise Institute, a right-wing US think-tank.
The IPA has made the following criticisms of proposals by the Australian government to introduce plain packaging of tobacco products:
- Plain packaging may not affect the consumption of those products and [note 1]
- Plain packaging may infringe intellectual property rights in tobacco trademarks and logos.
The IPA adopts a position of doubt about climate change and finances several Australian climate change science doubters. The IPA supports elements of climate change science, including some link between the use of fossil fuels and rising carbon dioxide levels, however it also disagrees with certain aspects of climate science.
In 2008, the institute facilitated a donation of $350,000 by Dr G. Bryant Macfie, a climate change denialist, to the University of Queensland for environmental research. The money is to fund three environmental doctoral projects, with the IPA suggesting two of the three agreed topics.
Other staff include:
- Mr Hugh Tobin, Deputy Executive Director
- Bob Carter, Science Policy Advisor
- Tom Switzer, Adjunct Fellow
- Norington, Brad (12 August 2003). "Think tank secrets - National - smh.com.au". www.smh.com.au. Retrieved 11 April 2010.
- Millar, Royce & Schneiders, Ben (Sydney Morning Herals, 25 August 2013, Free radicals [about Institute of Public Affairs]. 
- "Big donors dump IPA on climate scepticism". Sydney Morning Herald. 25 August 2013. Retrieved 12 August 2014.
- "Institute of Public Affairs calls for the abolition of the minimum wage". Sydney Morning Herald. april 7 2015. Retrieved 12 August 2014.
- "Conservative think tank the Institute of Public Affairs gives George Brandis race law ultimatum". Sydney Morning Herald. 1 May 2014. Retrieved 12 August 2014.
- Institute of Public Affairs | About IPA
- Robert Menzies in Office at the National Archives of Australia
- "The global warming sceptics - Science - www.theage.com.au". Melbourne: theage.com.au. 27 November 2004. Retrieved 2 November 2009.
- "Thinkers of Influence". The Age (Melbourne). 10 December 2005.
- Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Country Hour, 2004
- Oxfam Australia, 2003,  Charities under attack.
- Koutsoukis, Jason (17 June 2005). "Party faces choice new blood or not". The Age (Melbourne).
- John Howard, 19 May 2004, Address to the Institute of Public Affairs.
- Chris Berg, IPA Research Fellow, The Age, 17 April 2001, .
- "The benefit of the doubt". The Sydney Morning Herald. 8 May 2010.
- "Dispute over climate sceptic uni grant". The Australian. 7 May 2008.
- Reference shows the opinion of an individual, not the IPA